There are numerous benefits to allowing more natural light into your home, but the most obvious of these are the massive savings you can achieve with a reduced utility bill. Logically, the more natural light you have in your home, the less electricity you consume via lighting, but this isn’t the only benefit, and it’s far from the biggest one, either. A large benefit related to energy use is that natural light can help to heat your home.

Natural Light

Researches have also revealed that natural light offers a number of health benefits, including:

  • Sunlight increases the level of serotonin and endorphins in your brain, making you feel happier
  • The UV radiation acts as a natural antiseptic
  • One of the best sources of vitamin D is sunlight
  • Sunlight helps prevent childhood diseases and osteoporosis
  • Increased exposure to sunlight helps to manage premenstrual syndrome, insomnia, and seasonal affective disorder

All these are good reasons to design your home for natural light. But how can you achieve this?

Positioning of your home

The orientation of your home in regards to the sun is one of the key factors when it comes to increasing natural light in your house. In the northern hemisphere, the sun is always to the south, which means that whichever wall is facing the south receives the most sunlight. To increase natural light, the longest side of your home should face south, and have minimal jogs and offsets that could increase shade.

Additionally, you should have the rooms with the most daytime activity positioned along this wall, like the kitchen and living room. Other room arrangements can be made depending on how much sunshine is desired.

Windows

These provide the easiest and cheapest way to maximise natural light into your home. Large windows allow in more light, but this also means more natural heat, which may not be desirable during the hot summer months. To get an appropriate balance of natural lighting and heating, you should consider window proportions depending on the home orientation as follows:

  • South facing walls – cover 5 to 12 % of the house floor area
  • East facing walls – cover less than 4% of the floor area
  • North facing walls – cover less than 4% of the floor area
  • West facing walls – cover less than 2% of the floor area

Depending on your home measurements, you can determine whether floor-to-ceiling or clerestory windows are great for your home, or perhaps you should opt for a more custom look.

Finally, you should note that daylight levels vary with the time of day, season, and weather. It may seem obvious, but you should consider installing Tubular Daylighting Devices (TDDs) or skylights to make up for dull days. For more information, contact our expert team today!